As Perkins+Will has increased in size and reach, the challenge of protecting, managing and accurately provisioning storage in all locations has also grown. The ﬁrm’s architects work with business-critical BIM ﬁles as large as 300 GB. These models represent 80% of Perkins+Will’s data, so strong protection and uninterrupted access are critical. The complexity of design and management applications such as Revit, Navisworks and Newforma place an added premium on performance.
Finally, effective collaboration has always been a key capability in the ﬁrm’s business. In the past few years, up to 25% of the ﬁrm’s projects have involved multiple ofﬁces. This distribution of teams is great for clients, but often results in lost productivity for design professionals as the far ﬂung employees frequently wait for models to open or “sync to central.”
To meet its IT needs, Perkins+Will was relying on multiple traditional hardware storage solutions. These solutions had multiple drawbacks:
- Management Headaches: Ensuring remote backup was a hassle; IT had to manage numerous storage systems in each location
- Heavy MPLS/WAN Trafﬁc: Snapshots and ﬁle synchronization were eating up bandwidth
- Skyrocketing Costs: Data was growing so quickly that traditional three-year solutions were no longer sustainable
The Nasuni Solution
Perkins+Will has now deployed Nasuni at 24 locations across the globe, with high-performance hardware appliances matched to meet the storage needs of each ofﬁce. The immediate advantages:
- Performance: Designed for heavy workloads, the Nasuni Filer gives end users in all ofﬁces enterprise level access to ﬁles
- Multisite Access: Files are accessible from every ofﬁce with local performance
- Simpliﬁed Management: Centralized control of a uniform, distributed storage environment
- Reduced Complexity: A single solution takes the place of multiple systems
- Unlimited Scalability: Capacity can grow on-demand without impacting local infrastructure
- Strong Protection: Frequent versioning, unmatched RPO and fast DR
- Superior Economics: The ﬁrm will save 50% over the next three years on backup alone; slashed MPLS trafﬁc will generate added savings
“When we deployed Nasuni in one of our largest ofﬁces, with senior executives on-site, no one noticed. That’s the perfect scenario – better storage and no change to end-users.”
– Gerald van Benschop, Infrastructure Manager
Doing the Numbers
With 24 key locations and 100 TB of critical data, Perkins+Will was projecting to spend millions over the next three years in backup systems alone. The storage at those locations would have added more than a million dollars, bringing the total to an unacceptable level of cost.
Nasuni delivers additional functionality for under $1.5M over the same period, yielding 65% savings while improving the overall user experience and reducing risk to the organization.
Why Perkins+Will Chose Nasuni
Perkins+Will wanted an IT strategy that would bring them closer to clients as they expand their global reach. Nasuni delivered high performance storage with compelling economics and strong data protection. File synchronization services have made it possible for every location to share data with the rest of the organization. IT has freed up money to invest in other initiatives that help the ﬁrm. Rather than hindering expansion, IT is once again running on a strategy that supports the growth of the ﬁrm.
Founded in Chicago in 1935, Perkins+Will is one of the leading architecture and design ﬁrms in the world. The company has grown steadily over the last two decades and now has 24 ofﬁces around the globe. The award-winning ﬁrm works with clients in corporate, civic, education and healthcare sectors, among others.
“A fairly signiﬁcant portion of our [IT] budget was spent not just on internal storage, but the backup of that storage – and backup of that storage and then offsite backup. It was a no win situation.”
— Murali Selvaraj, CIO
“In addition to meeting all of our technical requirements, the cost effectiveness and the ease of expansion made Nasuni the right solution for us.”
– Gregory Fait, Director of IT